11 types of number plates in Nigeria & what they signify


Posted by: Oluwatobi Ogunrinde

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There are up to 11 types of number plates in Nigeria, which indicate different classes of people riding in the car. Check the information below to see whether you can guess the rank of driver in front of you next time you go on road!

Since inception, Nigeria has used 4 car number plates. We finally settled for the current one in 2011, which was introduced in 1992.

Currently, there are 11 types of number plates in Nigeria. They look different from each other – varying color background, lettering, and the likes. Also, each of these number plates represents something or someone.

Today, let's find out the meaning of different valid types of number plates in the country, brought to you by Naijauto.com!

1. Special/ Fancy number plates

  • Background – White
  • Lettering – Blue


Most celebrities in Nigeria opt for a fancy number plate

>>> Our teen actress also got a special plate for her new SUV: Regina Daniel dazzles us once again with customized plate number on her newly acquired Mercedes-Benz SUV

2. Mass Transit number plates

  • Background – White
  • Lettering – Red


Mass Transit, Commercial vehicles & School Buses all get red letters on white background

3. Private number plates

This is the most common types of number plates in Nigeria. You can see them around whenever you hit the road.

  • Background – White
  • Lettering – Blue

4. School Bus number plates

This type of number plate is similar to Mass Transit number plates. Both feature red letters on the white background.

  • Background – White
  • Lettering – Red


Many current number plate designs trace back to 1980s

5. Government number plates

  • Background – White
  • Lettering – Green


You can also see "FG" mark on this government car

>>> If you want a fancy car number plate, how much do you have to pay? Find the answer here! Vehicle plate number verification, costs and approved sites for new number plate

6. Commercial number plates

This type of number plates can be seen in commercial buses, which happens to be a kind of mass transit. That's why it adopts similar type of design: white background and red letters.

  • Background – White
  • Lettering – Red

7. Armed Forces/ Para-military number plates

  • Background – White
  • Lettering – Black


If you see this number plate, just keep your distance!

>>> While forgery is prevalent, make sure you have verified your number plate: How do you know whether your car plate number is fake or not?

8. Diplomatic number plates

Diplomatic number plates include 3 categories as below!

8.1. Corps Diplomat

  • Background – Neon Purple
  • Lettering – White


The most frequenly seen diplomatic plate is the one with purple background & white letters

8.2. Corps Consulate

  • Background – Brown
  • Lettering – White

8.3. Corps Technique

  • Background – Navy blue
  • Lettering – White

>>> Only with the car number plate, you can track the car owner: How to check car number plate owner in Nigeria?

9. Temporary number plates

  • Background – Black
  • Lettering – White


Special task force often utilizes temporary number plates

That's all 11 types of vehicle number plates in Nigeria. What? The numbering says 9 only, are we lying? Not at all. Diplomatic types include 3 categories of number plates, which add up 11 in total. If you have any question or want to add more, don't hesitate to email us at help@naijauto.com!

>>> Check Naijauto.com daily for mind-blowing car facts and latest auto news!

Oluwatobi Ogunrinde
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Oluwatobi Ogunrinde

Oluwatobi Ogunrinde

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A passionate writer looking to educate people with every piece of her work. Oluwatobi enjoys writing about exotic cars, productive tech traits, workplace culture, and basic data science values. She holds a Master's degree in Diplomacy and Strategic Studies from University of Lagos. When she's not expressing herself through a new article, she's reading about international politics.

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